M9_FULL rev 29NOV10

M9_FULL rev 29NOV10 - Marketing Principles and Processes...

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Marketing Principles and Processes M odule 9 Adver ti sing A direct marketing process such as that illustrated above is increasingly being used to advertise to existing customers because it costs much less to retain and grow a customer’s business than it does to acquire a new customer. It is not very sexy, but the emphasis in advertising should always be on its functionality rather than its creative form or the medium used. Do direct marketing campaigns retain and grow customers? Is e-mail more effective than snail mail? Do other forms of advertising reach hot prospects better? In advertising, the end should direct the means. Form should follow function rather than function following form. Peter R. Dickson © Backbone Press 2010
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Form follows function 1 . E ffective advertising informs, persuades and reminds. Direct marketing to existing customers or hot prospects that reminds, informs and persuades is the most effective advertising in economies dominated by services. It is not very sexy, but the emphasis in advertising should always be on its functionality rather than its creative form or the medium used. Form should follow function rather than function following form. 1. Advertising Principles 1. If you have something to say, advertise. If not, don’t. 2. Keep your message simple and powerful; otherwise, it will be lost in the advertising clutter. 3. Communicate first with your existing customers to keep their business. 4. Communicate second with your hottest prospects. These four fundamental advertising principles are often ignored in advertising campaigns. Why? Perhaps it is because the people responsible do not understand what they are doing, do not care about what they are doing, do not believe in what they are doing or all of the above! The principles can be summarized as common sense: do not talk in a complicated way about something to people who are not interested in what you have to say. 1 A second way in which advertising often fails is when function follows form. Advertising should always have a clear function: to remind, to prompt, to inform, to educate, to persuade, to assure, all in ways that increase sales. When the advertising form dominates its function, when its cleverness, wit, humor, and artistry dominate over actual performance, then it does not work. Form should always follow function in the design of products and services and also in the communication of messages directed at customers. The marketers of Coors Light “Rocky Mountain cold refreshment” have mind-numbingly focused on repeating its slogan (according to Advertising Age magazine) at 4:53 p.m. across a multitude of high traffic websites such as the Weather Channel and Yahoo! Sports. They compete against Miller Lite’s “Tastes Great, Less Filling” Slogan. Repeating a simple, strong product benefit over and over again in advertising may not win awards, but it works. On the other hand, if it is not obvious how an advertisement is meant to function, then form is not following function. If the ad message is not simple
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